Fair Enough!

Is it just me or has there really been a spate of advertisements for Men’s fairness creams on television lately? Last when I counted there were four different kinds of them. And add them to the hundred odd other products trying to scrub our ladies of their beautiful golden brown complexion; you would come to believe that dark skin was a national shame or something that we Indians as a race desperately needed to get rid of. As if it were some weapon of mass destruction and if we didn’t all become lily white Uncle Sam will come after us too. I know we all strive for a fairer society but this is taking it too literally.
Let’s look at this argument both ways. Their view and my view. First question is, why shouldn’t men be asked to take care of their complexion? After all we have flooded the matrimonial ads with demands like “wanted a fair and beautiful match” to ‘wanted milky white bride” since, well forever. Time and again men and their families have rejected so many proposals in favor of the oh-so-fairer one. Why shouldn’t women pick “mera wala white” guy now that the times are changing and they can choose their own partner as the era of arranged marriages is on the wane? Very valid question indeed. Makes me wanna cry in despair though. No hope for me, I am the black sheep of my family. I belong to the dark side. No amount of cream is going to make me surf excel white, unless I decide to go the Michael Jackson way. No not THAT way idiot, I meant the skin transplant thing, you pervert.
No, I am not against metrosexual men. Of course the good old manly man will have his own charm and there will be certain women who will pick the retrosexual men over today’s perennial boys. But more and more women are leaning towards men who take care of themselves. Still I find that this fairness cream thing way over the top. What’s next? Breast…err…Butt implants? I heard women dig that like nothing else. Now don’t get me wrong, I am all for grooming. I am all for shaving the chest and armpits and keeping things tidy down under. Seriously even one hair sticking out of your nose makes Carrot Top more attractive to women than you. Go on get your hair colored or straightened or whatever is cool. Hell, even get your eyebrows fixed if you are in to all that. I am all for being in touch with your feminine side but this fairness cream stuff, this is like molesting her!
Is this just a disturbing trend, a fad which will die with time or is this a hangover from the colonial days when we all were looked down up on by the fair skinned goras for being dark and there by “inferior”. To me this is a subtler version of racism, sort of like ethnic cleansing. Do you think the same companies would be able to sell their products in Africa? Ok maybe they will, since so many of us have immigrated to Africa, but besides them they will not sell a single cream. I know a lot of Africans from college days and I know they have a really fierce sense of pride in their skin. It represents who they are. It’s their identity. And Michael Jackson apart, they will not part with it for anything. Wish I could say the same for us. Sadly we will part with anything if the price is right.